Sunday, November 21, 2010

Nightshade by Andrea Cremer

Published: October 2010
Publisher: Philomel Books
# Pages: 452
Copy Provided by: Library
Summary: Goodreads

Calla Tor has always known her destiny: After graduating from the Mountain School, she'll be the mate of sexy alpha wolf Ren Laroche and fight with him, side by side, ruling their pack and guarding sacred sites for the Keepers. But when she violates her masters' laws by saving a beautiful human boy out for a hike, Calla begins to question her fate, her existence, and the very essence of the world she has known. By following her heart, she might lose everything— including her own life. Is forbidden love worth the ultimate sacrifice?

In 'Nightshade' Ms Cremer has written a complex and multi-layered story set in a wholly believable world. She has also populated it with multi-faceted characters that you can't help but become attached to. I very quickly became absorbed in the story of Calla, Ren and Shay and all of their friends and pack mates. Calla and Ren are strong and vibrant, and fit well in the world that Ms. Cremer has set up for them. Shay is the 'unknown' factor. Pivotal to the mystery that is at the heart of the story.

There is a major OMG moment about half-way through the book, which had me turning pages at a rapid rate from then on. I sort of guessed what was coming, but at the same time, so many new puzzles were thrown in that the ending came as a huge shock - although on hindsight I am convinced that I should have seen it coming, but I didn't - not really! Ok, if that just sounded confusing, I'm sorry. This book is exciting! It's full of twists and turns and yet at the same time seems very straight forward. The amazing world that has been created became very real and the characters were so believable. It is a completely new world with Guardians, Keepers and Searchers - good fighting evil - and you're never quite sure who is who and which is which. It is small town urban fantasy, and it works, in just about every way. It's new and different and well worth reading. I'm certain you won't be disappointed with this one.

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